Unity Of Purpose And Diversity In Application

Srimad Bhagavatam 09.11.21-22 - Unity Of Purpose And Diversity In Application (download mp3)
by Kalakantha Prabhu at ISKCON Chowpatty

SB 9.11.21
yasyamalam nrpa-sadahsu yaso 'dhunapi
gayanty agha-ghnam rsayo dig-ibhendra-pattam
tam nakapala-vasupala-kirita-justa-
padambujam raghupatim saranam prapadye

Lord Ramacandra's spotless name and fame, which vanquish all sinful reactions, are celebrated in all directions, like the ornamental cloth of the victorious elephant that conquers all directions. Great saintly persons like Markandeya Rsi still glorify His characteristics in the assemblies of great emperors like Maharaja Yudhisthira. Similarly, all the saintly kings and all the demigods, including Lord Siva and Lord Brahma, worship the Lord by bowing down with their helmets. Let me offer my obeisances unto His lotus feet.

SB 9.11.22
sa yaih sprsto 'bhidrsto va
samvisto 'nugato 'pi va
kosalas te yayuh sthanam
yatra gacchanti yoginah

Lord Ramacandra returned to His abode, to which bhakti-yogis are promoted. This is the place to which all the inhabitants of Ayodhya went after they served the Lord in His manifest pastimes by offering Him obeisances, touching His lotus feet, fully observing Him as a fatherlike King, sitting or lying down with Him like equals, or even just accompanying Him.

The Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (4.9):

janma karma ca me divyam
evam yo vetti tattvatah
tyaktva deham punar janma
naiti mam eti so 'rjuna

"One who knows the transcendental nature of My appearance and activities does not, upon leaving the body, take his birth again in this material world, but attains My eternal abode, O Arjuna." Here this is confirmed. All the inhabitants of Ayodhya who saw Lord Ramacandra as citizens, served Him as servants, sat and talked with Him as friends or were somehow or other present during His reign went back home, back to Godhead. After giving up the body, the devotee who becomes perfect in devotional service enters that particular universe where Lord Ramacandra or Lord Krsna is engaged in His pastimes. Then, after being trained to serve the Lord in various capacities in that prakata-lila, the devotee is finally promoted to sanatana-dhama, the supreme abode in the spiritual world. This sanatana-dhama is also mentioned in Bhagavad-gita (paras tasmat tu bhavo 'nyo 'vyakto 'vyaktat sanatanah [Bg. 8.20]). One who enters the transcendental pastimes of the Lord is called nitya-lila-pravista. To understand clearly why Lord Ramacandra returned, it is mentioned herewith that the Lord went to that particular place where the bhakti-yogis go. The impersonalists misunderstand the statements of Srimad-Bhagavatam to mean that the Lord entered His own effulgence and therefore become impersonal. But the Lord is a person, and His devotees are persons. Indeed, the living entities, like the Lord, were persons in the past, they are persons in the present, and they will continue to be persons even after giving up the body. This is also confirmed in Bhagavad-gita.a